Nearly one-third of employers used word of mouth to promote their positions in 2022, a report finds

australia, recruitment,


Jobs and Skills Australia releases ‘Recruitment methods used by Employers 2021 – 2022’ analysis report to help monitor recruitment activity and conditions across Australia.

A new analysis from Jobs and Skills Australia (JSA) shows that employers use wide and varied advertising methods. Across Australia, the 3 most common recruitment methods employers use are posting online job ads, word-of-mouth and social media.

The type of advertising used varies between regions and state.  For example, word-of-mouth and social media advertising are more prevalent in regional areas. In capital cities, 68% of employers used online job platforms, compared with 53% of regional employers.

Interestingly, in 2022, around one in seven employers (14%) didn’t advertise their most recent vacancy and only used word-of-mouth or considered job seekers who approached the business directly.

Understanding the methods employers use to recruit in particular regions can help a person’s chances of finding the right job, with significant differences across Australia in the methods used. Likewise, this information can help tailor recruitment strategies to suit each region, particularly between city and country areas.

Key findings from the Recruitment Experiences and Outlook Survey

From January 2021 to December 2022, REOS results point to a continuing tight labour market. Recruitment activity across Australia in December 2022 was above the level recorded in January 2021, as was the level of recruitment difficulty. Some 52% of employers reported recruiting in December 2022, which was 13 percentage points higher than in January 2021.

The recruitment difficulty rate in December 2022 was 65%, 26 percentage points above the level recorded in January 2021 (39%). Recruitment difficulty across higher-skilled, lower-skilled, casual and non-casual vacancies has also been trending upwards.

Methods of Recruitment: National Overview 2022

Employers use a wide range of methods to find the workers they need. Advertising on Internet job boards is the most common method of finding staff. Almost two-thirds of recruiting employers used this method in 2022. Internet job boards are popular as they allow job seekers to access a substantial number of vacancies advertised; while employers use these sites to attract a large pool of potential candidates.

Nearly one-third of recruiting employers used word of mouth to promote their positions in 2022. Some employers approach people directly about job opportunities, while others ask existing employees, friends, or family members if they know anyone interested in the position.

Social media was used by 25% of recruiting employers in 2022. This continues an increased use of social media for recruitment in recent years. A growing trend in social media recruitment is through region-based or industry-based Facebook’ job groups’, which are an inexpensive way for employers to post vacancies and allow interactions between employers and local job seekers, especially for lower skilled positions. LinkedIn is also popular, especially for more highly skilled positions.

Across the country, the use of formal methods for advertising vacancies is prevalent. In 2021, 56% of recruiting employers advertised vacancies on Internet jobs boards, compared with 63% in 2022. The use of word of mouth (31% in 2021 and 30% in 2022) and social media (24% in 2021 and 25% in 2022) was also significant. The least common recruitment methods used were job seekers directly approaching employers (7% in 2021 and 6% in 2022) and newspaper (4% in both years).

Methods of recruitment differ between city and regional areas

Recruitment methods can vary significantly depending on the employer’s location or vacancy. In Australia’s major cities, 68% of recruiting employers used Internet job boards in 2022, far more than in regional areas, where usage sits at just over half of recruiting employers.

The use of social media and word of mouth increases with remoteness:

  • In regional areas, 36% of employers used social media, and 34% used word of mouth
  • In major cities, 20% used social media and 28% used word of mouth.

Click here to read the full report.

Source: © Commonwealth of Australia | © Commonwealth of Australia

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